BMEWS
 
Sarah Palin's presence in the lower 48 means the Arctic ice cap can finally return.

calendar   Saturday - October 17, 2015

diggin it

After a short frost this morning, we spent the afternoon working on the new parking space garden. Finished digging the side row, then went and dug it 4” deeper because the Asiatic lilies want to go in 8” down and even there they need a couple inches of soil under them to root in. So it was back to the breaker bar.

Right. So the lilies and the dwarf irises are in, flanked by 3 itty bitty ornamental grass plants that will eventually be 8 feet tall. And then it was time to fill in the trench. Which took hours. The “soil” that came out was literally half shale, so screening enough to give me about half a yard (4 bins full) of dirt to mix 1:2 with my first class topsoil took a lot of time. Call it an entire wheelbarrow full of rocks, about 4 cubic feet. And down the embankment they go!

Tomorrow I’ll get a jump on the forward central area. Nothing in there needs deep planting, so digging down 9” will be plenty.  A border of randomly colored hyacinths and a belt of daffodils goes in there, guarding the 3 kinds of tulips in the middle from marauding deer. At least, that’s the theory. The back central area will be similar, just different tulips and daffodils. The strip across the very front comes last, even next year if Winter comes early. That area’s for annuals, which is nearly a Who Cares situation.

Right now I need to take about 3 showers. The delightful aroma of organic fertilizer laced with somewhat composted cow manure ... an aromatic gift that just keeps on giving.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 10/17/2015 at 10:48 PM   
Filed Under: • Daily LifeEnvironment •  
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calendar   Thursday - October 08, 2015

that time of year

This morning it was wool socks and my winter parka over a long sleeve shirt.

This afternoon it’s shorts and short sleeves, and I’m still sweating it up out there.

Changeable weather, indeed.

At this rate, if the forecast for tomorrow is snow, I’d better start looking for the sunblock tonight.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 10/08/2015 at 04:29 PM   
Filed Under: • Climate-WeatherDaily Life •  
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calendar   Sunday - September 27, 2015

garden mystery solved

Well, it’s a mystery no more. In the time it took me to start this post, I ran 3 different Google searches to try to find the proper name of this oddball little plant the nursery sold me this year.

It’s a deep shade grower, and I hope it’s a perennial. The little starter plants had no labels, and all the nursery lady could tell me was that this was “It’s spotted plant. There’s a green and white one, a green and pink one, and a green and pink one with red stems”. And shes right, and it’s done very well in my garden, growing a foot and a half tall and living happily in the deep shade.

And now it’s blooming. From the underside of the leaves. Itsy-bitsy little purple flowers. Go figure.


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Turns out it’s called a Polka Dot Plant, so the young woman at the plant shop wasn’t too far off. Common as mud in certain areas. It’s a native to Madagascar and is supposed to grow 10” tall. It’s also often grown as a houseplant, and grows outside as an annual.

The proper name of this little group - the three varieties seem to co-exist together almost always - is hypoestes phyllostachya. I like the sound of that. Hypo. Estes. Phyllo. Stachya. A super - model rocket powered - dough - mustache?

Whatever. Wiki says it’s herbaceous, which means they’re going to die off, but will drop seeds to regrow themselves next year. Fine by me. I think it’s a winner.


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One of the tiny little blossoms, fallen onto the surrounding ground cover perennial, False SomethingorOther.

Plant names ... they’re so hard to remember!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/27/2015 at 07:03 PM   
Filed Under: • Daily LifeNature •  
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calendar   Saturday - September 12, 2015

Another load of hot air

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FWWWOOOSH!! FFWWOOOOSHH!!

If you live here at our condo park long enough, you’ll know what that sound means. It means there’s another hot air balloon right over your head either scrambling for altitude or getting ready to land. It’s a pretty regular business, taking people for rides over our pretty countryside.

Around 8:15 Saturday morning a big black balloon came down out of the mist and nearly set down on the grass behind us. But with the basket of passengers barely more than 50 feet off the ground the pilot changed his mind, and blasted the burners to pop back up in the sky for another minute or so. That gave us time to grab the cameras and go, to see them make their landing in the old Wachovia Bank parking lot up on Bank Street. From where we stood it looked like they came mighty close to the power lines, but that was probably a matter of perspective.

Once down everyone got out, the balloon cooled off, and they pulled the dump valve to drop the bag. Packed it up and away they went. Another aerial adventure here at UGV.

Keep your cameras at hand here folks, you never know what will happen next.

Actually, we were outside having our coffee, enjoying the garden, and hardly bothered to look up when we heard the first 4 or 5 blasts on the balloon’s gas heaters. We’re so jaded. Balloons come over all the time when the weather is decent. But when our half-wild cats suddenly looked up, shrank back in horror, and ran away in a panic, we knew it was time to get the cameras out. And wouldn’t you know, the batteries were mostly dead in the ones we like to use the best. So we didn’t get the classic “giant black orb blots out the sky” picture as the thing practically set down on our patio. The pilot bounced it up a hundred feet and we immediately gave chase. How can you not? As we ran for the car they floated up to the top of the hill, and put down in the old bank parking lot. Which is right across the street from my little morning job’s guard shack. But I don’t work there on Saturday. What evs. So touchdown with a couple of little bounces, everyone got out OK, then they got to work deflating and packing up. And in less than half an hour they were gone. 

See More Below The Fold

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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/12/2015 at 11:57 AM   
Filed Under: • Daily Lifeplanes, trains, tanks, ships, machines, automobiles •  
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calendar   Monday - August 17, 2015

Bloop bloop bloop

The Turkeyson family pays us an evening visit. “Bloop bloop, book bloop” they chatter away as they walk down the side yard.

The whole family out for a stroll. Mom, Dad, and at least 4 little ones.

Meanwhile, Teh Kittehs, our pair of semi-feral kitties who live outside here and were hanging out on the nice warm concrete patio, hear the sound and run to investigate.

The parent birds stand over 3 feet tall walking upright, their muted summer colors making them hard to see in the gentle shadows even 15 feet away.  Teh Kittehs race around the corner of the marigolds and there they are, face to face.

HOLY SHIT, TURKEYS!!! RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!! And the cats do a 180 in mid-air and take off at Warp Factor 4. The turkeys just stand there. But when we grabbed our cameras they strutted back up our little hill and into the brush at the top of the gully here. Too much fuss and bother.

Our digital cameras just can’t shoot fast enough, zoom fast enough, and doesn’t record in sharp detail fast enough. And even with fresh batteries, the flash won’t cycle as fast as I want it to. Sometimes, I think real film and real cameras can’t be beat. Does one even exist that’s “SLR” fast? How many thousand does that cost??

“Bloop bloop blip” and they were once again invisible.

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Life here in the sticks.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/17/2015 at 11:23 PM   
Filed Under: • AnimalsDaily Life •  
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calendar   Friday - August 14, 2015

anyone who doesn’t subscribe to the feminazi pov is automatically, a misogynist.

So being silenced for an unpopular opinion with a minority group, or any group, is in keeping with free expression and speech.  Hey, with all due respects to any ladies reading here today, what he said and even if he is dead wrong, is not hate speech.

I had to look the word up a second time to make certain I knew the meaning of, misogynist.  I did know what the word means, and nowhere in what this DJ said could it be reasonably assumed he hates women or even dislikes women.  He just finds breast feeding in public rather disgusting and off putting. And especially so when the female is rather on the overly large size.  These days, that word get used and overly abused to shout out and shut down anyone who dares say a critical word about a woman, or group of them for whatever reason.  And of course it’s usually the guys who are the haters for daring to say they’re put off by some actions or words used by, generally, feminazis. 

It’s kind of odd in a way considering that it’s generally accepted, that most if not all males are breast mad beasts who go stark raving mad with desire, at the mere thought never mind the sight of a female breast.  And they are usually displayed and nicely sometimes, everywhere we go. 

So anyway, this poor schnook says breastfeeding is awful in public and women should not expose others to their right to do so.  How did breastfeeding women make it all those years ago when ladies were a bit more modest?  Or, is that a misogynist question?  I think he stuck his foot in mouth tho, when he said breastfeeding was, “unnatural”.  Maybe he meant to say in public.

For our American readers, Chav or Chavvy is a Brit word.

noun, Chiefly British Slang: Disparaging and Offensive

a person who wears fashionable brands, flashy jewelry, etc., but is regarded as having bad or lower-class taste.

Alex Dyke: BBC radio DJ suspended after complaining about ‘unnatural’ breastfeeding

A BBC radio DJ has been suspended after claiming on air that breastfeeding is “unnatural” and “has to be stopped”.

Alex Dyke, who broadcasts on Radio Solent, was later said to have attempted to defend his comments by arguing that “my point was, fat chavvy mums with their boobs out on buses isn’t a good look”. A petition has called for the “ill-educated misogynist” to be taken off air.

More than 6,600 people have signed the change.org petition. The BBC said that his comments were “unacceptable” and that the DJ would not present his show on Friday. It was unclear how long he would be suspended.

In his show, which was “not currently” available on its iPlayer web page, Mr Dyke said: “It is 2015. Ladies, mums, we don’t like breastfeeding in public, honestly we don’t.

“I experienced this yesterday. I was on a bus and there was a lady on this bus. She was quite a big girl and she had a toddler with her. She starts to breastfeed her baby on the bus. I didn’t know where to look. She’s putting me in an embarrassing situation.

“Breastfeeding is unnatural. I know its natural but it’s kind of unnatural.
We don’t want it in public. It was OK in the Stone Age, when we knew no better.”

“I blame the earth mothers – you know the ones I mean, the ones with the moustaches, the ones who work in libraries, the ones who wear hessian, the ones they’re always on Radio 4 on Women’s Hour [sic], they are always pushing the boundaries and making us feel uncomfortable.”

The petition, posted by Maisie Jameson, said: “There is already a stigma around breastfeeding, and we don’t need ill-educated misogynists like Alex Dyke to make it even more apparent.

“In fact he was right.  We’re NOT in the Stone Age anymore – we’re in the 21st century.”

source

What stigma pray is she referring to?  I have never read or heard that there was any stigma attached to that action, except when done in public. 


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/14/2015 at 12:20 PM   
Filed Under: • Daily Life •  
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calendar   Saturday - August 01, 2015

‘This sums up everything that is wrong about our immigration system

Just another reason to make Britain your next home.  Especially if you’re criminal minded and ,,,, if you’ve ever killed anyone ,,,, go to the head of the line.

Old subject ,, recent article. How could they have allowed this insanity to continue?  How could things have become so routine?

Oh and btw .... his legal aid paid for by ????  You get five guesses cos I know this is a hard one.  These pop quizzes aren’t supposed to be easy ya know.


Sex attacker allowed to stay in Britain because of his right to family life… despite walking out on his wife and children

The sex attacker known only as AB appealed an order for his deportation

The illegal immigrant spent 16 years trying to avoid being sent to Morocco

The man was deported in 2000 but managed to sneak back in to the UK

He was able to challenge his latest deportation after five court attempts

By Ian Drury for the Daily Mail

A foreign sex attacker cannot be deported because of his right to a family life – even though his wife says he has left her and their children.

The 52-year-old illegal immigrant, who has cost the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of pounds, has run rings around the Home Office as he has evaded attempts to boot him out of Britain for 16 years.

The Moroccan, who can only be identified as AB, was last night accused of making a mockery of the immigration system, with critics branding a judge’s decision to let him stay in the country ‘idiotic’ and ‘flying completely in the face of common sense’.

In a further slap in the face to the public, the shameless criminal is claiming a five-figure sum in legal aid to fund his battle to stay in the country, which was revealed in court papers seen by the Daily Mail. Five years after slipping into the UK in May 1991, AB was convicted of a serious sexual assault on a 61-year-old woman.

A deportation order was issued in 1999 and he was deported in June 2000 after serving four years in prison.

However, in a move branded ‘inexplicable’ by a judge, border guards allowed him back in on Christmas Day that year.

AB subsequently had two children, aged ten and nine, with an English citizen identified only as Ms S, who he married in 2009.

Now, after four unsuccessful legal challenges between 2006 and 2012, he has thwarted Theresa May’s latest bid to remove him – successfully arguing it would violate Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the right to family life. In October last year immigration Judge Jeremy Rintoul ruled the Home Secretary acted ‘unlawfully’ by failing to give sufficient weight to the ‘harm’ his removal could cause the children and quashed the deportation order.

However, the illegal immigrant’s wife told the Mail that AB had not lived at the family home in Luton since January.

She said: ‘He’s been gone for a good few months since the beginning of this year and he doesn’t live here anymore.

‘He went of his own accord and we haven’t seen him for a while. I’ve not heard from him either.’

In total, AB’s case is estimated to have cost hundreds of thousands of pounds of public money in detention, legal challenges and paperwork.

Last night critics were outraged. Conservative MP Philip Davies said: ‘This sums up everything that is wrong about our immigration system and how lax our border controls are.

‘It is scandalous that a foreign criminal can play the system after committing such a serious offence.

more to read

come on ....  it wasn’t this piece of worthless scum who ran rings around the system.  How about treasonous, filthy, money mad lawyers who don’t care one bit what harm they do to the country they live in.

Have you noticed that even in the USA, in spite of a lot of publicity a few years ago, in neither country is there a well organized and funded and dedicated patriot militia who are trained well and able to quietly take out the vermin and their enablers.  Who multiply by numbers I can’t even imagine. 


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/01/2015 at 11:53 AM   
Filed Under: • CULTURE IN DECLINEDaily LifeIllegal-Aliens and ImmigrationJudges-Courts-Lawyers •  
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Late Night Grilling

Taking my chances here with a nice chunk of tenderloin. About 2lb I think. 8 minutes a side over low heat, with the grill heated to a touch over 400? We shall see.

Anyway, we played a bit of a drinking game while watching the final episode of season 3 of the Western mining camp adventure show Deadwood. Lucky me, I drew Tolliver, and she drew Swearengen. We debated having to drink whenever our chosen character said any variation of “fuck” or “cocksucker”, but settled instead on drinking whenever they did. Alas the episode focused mostly on Swearengen, so she had to down about 6 shots, even though I gave her a break of 1/2 for her to every 1 of his. Tolliver hardly put in an appearance. If we went by dialog, both of us would be dead - the series set records for profanity. It’s a pretty rough show, full of murders and debauchery and constant swearing. And that was it for season 3. And the series. No real closure to the story arc, but several more cherished characters killed off. It sure was involving though.

We also finished off Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, an odd little miniseries fantasy about an alternate England in the Napoleonic Era wherein magicians have great power, but eventually have to use it to fight the evil Fairies from The Other Side. Simplistic, but some nice CGI from time to time.

Summer TV. Whatchu gonna do? Now it looks like we’re down to following Under The Dome again, a Stephen King adaptation that should have run its course in one season but has been extended to last forever. IMO, not only has the shark jumped, but it did a triple backflip through burning hoops and spiked the landing. At least Dome’s got 3 redheads worth looking at. Mostly.

Otay. So the Filets Mignon should be ready to eat now. And it’s only 10:30.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/01/2015 at 01:10 AM   
Filed Under: • Daily LifeTelevision •  
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calendar   Sunday - July 26, 2015

obama just has to meddle in Brit business.  AGAIN!

Still getting work done on this old place, and believe me finding the workmen ( and women ) not always easy. Although the ladies we’ve encountered tend to be on time or call if can’t and do show up and get things done. So anyway ... when you find really good people who are reliable, you tend to keep em close and almost become friends.  And so it is with the two guys who have installed new double glaze thru-out and finally after all these many years, a new back door.  Front one done in Sept and that part of house project done.  The most serious fix will be something called “Rising Damp” which is a problem in houses like these. 
Well ... I got an email from window guy Phil.

He’s the one I wrote about who missed the Tunisia massacre by a day due to his son’s prom night.

I would never have thought Turkey. When he said he was going there. I thought it was a joke.
Guess I’m not much travel oriented anymore. But apparently, there’s a part of Turkey very popular vacation spot and some Brits own condos there.

Anyway .... just had to share his note to me last week as I thought it interesting. But I still don’t wanna go.

Btw ... re. Tunisia, I had no idea originally how popular the place was before the attack.  Among ppl from all over Europe, there were ten thousand Brits. So it musta been seen as a safe place I suppose.  They were all evacuated, some even flown out by RAF planes, I understand.
-30-

Hi ,

Yep im back and very busy at the moment.
The holiday was lovely, Turkey is a great place and all the people were very friendly all except the many Russians at the hotel who are rude, ill mannered greedy people. Even the Turkish staff didn’t like them, we were some of the few English there for the first five days. Weather was hot ....36 degrees .I would recommend Turkey and definitely go back again ,we were on the Bodrum peninsular which is a great distance from the borders to Iran etc,so we didn’t feel unsafe at all out in the town. From our hotel room we had a view across the sea and could easily see the Greek island of Cos...i was surprised how close they are. Lots of food booze and sun...perfect.
-30-

Nothing but rain here in Winchester all day yesterday and damn cold too.  ( Same for today, Sunday) Kept off puter and just read the papers and especially Friday book reviews.
Amazing how fast our lawn returned to green. There was hardly any to be seen the day before. Today looks to be pretty good so far, but still cold in spite of mostly sunny skies on Saturday. But no sun today. It’s that damp to the bones chill.

This being England, one should not hold the breath with regard to weather reports. I judge it by my neighbor’s laundry. If her line outside is full by 9am, it’s a wash day and rain would not dare.  Seems to have worked the last few years they’ve been here.

Politics. Oh no, not that. Yeah well.

Obama’S Big Fat Mouth.

That man has me thinking more like some Brits I know. I’m even drinking more tea these days. But honestly bmews, I am pissed off again because Mr. Know everything about Britain and how the ppl feel, has stuck his big fat foot and mouth into OUR Feckin business. Again.  OK, I’m not really allowed to say “our” but my wife is, so that “our” was from her but I feel it too.

This past week makes the second time he has stuck his nose in Brit home affairs and with my accent I get questions like, who does he think he is? Well that’s the mild version.  He wants Brits to remain in the EU.  He is totally outta touch with many folks here, and there is real desire among many to leave the EU. But his recent address urging UK to stay and the things he had to say, had to be written by a speechwriter who never lived here.
Or if he or she did, they didn’t get out much.
An editorial in one of our morning papers had this to say.

“As Barack Obama urges Britain to remain in the EU, the Mail has a word of advice for our most powerful ally.  Would you mind your own business, please, Mr. President – and leave us to decide where our interests lie?”
The Daily Mail

He’s upset quite a few here and this is the second time on the same subject.  Apparently he must think it’s perfectly grand that the ppl here continue to be ruled by laws passed by unelected bureaucrats sitting in Brussels and Strasbourg.

A long delayed referendum will be held on an in or out by the end of 2017.  Of course the PM is hedging bets as politicians will do. He is calling it an in or out vote on reforms the ppl have told the govt. they want.  Well, depends on who ya read or listen to.  But just engage in conversations with strangers in a coffee bar or pub, and they do not believe the reform line. In any event, it doesn’t affect the USA, so why Mr. O. thinks the folks here need his advice is beyond me. 

Another columnist wrote :

WESTMINSTER NOTICEBOARD

Amanda Platell
President Obama warns Britain that if it leaves the EU we will lose our influence on the world stage. As the fifth biggest economy in the world, we don’t need to take lectures on commerce from Obama.

And if you need more, under another headline;

Barack Obama’s plea for UK to stay in the EU infuriates Tory Eurosceptics who say ‘it’s a matter for the British people alone’

· President said staying in the EU would give the U.S. ‘greater confidence’
· Claimed that membership gives the UK greater influence on world stage
· The ‘interference’ angered many Conservatives ahead of 2017 referendum
· Labour say it shows that membership enhances our relationship with U.S.

By Daniel Martin Chief Political Correspondent For The Daily Mail

Barack Obama was under fire from Tories last night after urging Britain to stay in the European Union.

The US president told the BBC that the UK must stay with Brussels if it is to continue to have influence on the world stage.
He said Britain’s EU membership ‘gives us much greater confidence about the strength of the transatlantic union’.
But Eurosceptics lambasted the comments, saying they were an unwarranted interference in a decision to be made by the UK electorate in a referendum due by the end of 2017.
Tom Pursglove, Conservative MP for Corby, said the issue of EU membership was ‘a matter for the British people’. ‘It isn’t for anybody else to tell the British people what they are going to do,’ he said.

Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan tweeted: ‘I accept that there may be some arguments for staying in the EU. Humouring Barack Obama is not one of them.’

SOURCES

There are of course some very powerful money interests, and they have a voice even if many are foreign companies.

My bet is ... this country is fast going down the drain anyway and I hate to see it.  I think Brits are gonna get screwed royal without benefit of foreplay.  I really believe most want out and believe they can still trade with the world.
But I don’t think it will happen.  I think there will be something behind the heavy screens, and it the records and papers will be locked away for 500 years. Yes, there will no doubt be a few bones thrown to the old dog and the politicians will boast, see?  We got reforms as promised.


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 07/26/2015 at 09:59 AM   
Filed Under: • Daily Life •  
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calendar   Saturday - July 25, 2015

passing through, slowly

Such is life. People come into your life one way or another, they’re around for awhile, and then they’re gone. Life seems to maintain a kind of status quo, so you don’t notice the time going by, and you take the passing years for granted.

Oh, I’m not talking death or the great circle of life, although that’s part of it too.

No, I need to find a new chiropractor. And a new friend.  We’ve been going to him for .... holy cats, 13 or 14 years? Longer maybe? And he’s become a friend, along with his wife. Ok, maybe not the closest of friends, over to each other’s house constantly, but they’re people we really mesh with.

He decided a few years ago it was time to get out of the rat race. Saw Obama’s writing on the wall and went Galt. Sold his great big house on the back side of the real estate bubble, but at least he was able to sell. Rented a smaller place. Started working on a material-free side business about 3 years ago that would generate some residual income. And now his kids are off to college, or joining the Navy. Out of the house. So it was time. A few weeks ago he announced he’s retiring and they’re moving south. Closing the practice after 25 years.

It just didn’t seem real to me, even when I was in his office last week and noticed that some of the stuff was starting to thin out. We went in last night, and the place was nearly empty. Our talk was all about trusting the movers or not, and packing, vehicle transport and what to do with all the pets and firearms, the wisdom of letting the kids run the estate sale to get rid of everything you don’t want to move, and the fortitude to just throw the rest away. It’s time. They’re going.

We’ll stop in Monday, or maybe Wednesday to say good bye. And then we’ll never see them again.

Very sad.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/25/2015 at 02:48 PM   
Filed Under: • Daily Life •  
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calendar   Tuesday - July 21, 2015

maybe too leftover

Not having the best of days here.

I made up some leftover leftovers for dinner the other night, finding all sorts of “hey, this still looks Ok” bits in the fridge. A little pork, a little lamb, some roasted chicken, but no ham. A few spoonsful of various vegetables and the end of a couple bags of frozen ones. You know, a real “Dad meal” to use up all that expensive food going to waste. Made up some rice, and found a can of Thai curry paste in the back of the closet that was only a year and a half out of code. Put it all together, and it was actually pretty good. And there was enough leftover so I could have another serving for lunch yesterday. But today ... I think I’m going to stay close to home. As in, no more than 30 seconds away from my new favorite seat.

Crivens. It must have been the rice.

I think it’s time to start putting date labels on all those little containers that breed in the icebox. Just so I know.

And it’s time to visit the Asian market again to get another half dozen or so cans of Maesri Thai curry paste. That stuff is so good, no matter what flavor you pick.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/21/2015 at 08:00 PM   
Filed Under: • Daily Life •  
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calendar   Friday - July 17, 2015

What a gas

The propane tanks on your gas grill have an expiration date.  I didn’t know that! They’re good for 12 years from when they were made, and after that they have to be either recycled or recertified.

I used up the tank I got at the Exxon exchange this Spring. Took it down to the car wash, who also does propane cylinders, and the guy shows me how it’s 16 years ol. Made in 1999, it’s 4 years out of code. And he won’t refill it.

So what to do?

“Take it up the hill to Wal-mart. Get an exchange tank from their Blue Rhino bin. They’ll take your old tank, they don’t care.”

And he’s right, they did, and they didn’t care a jot. Of course, I didn’t say anything about code dates. I just asked for an exchange. And when I came back out after paying, she had one in the cart for me. So I looked.

“Oh miss? This tank is out of code. Can I have one that’s still valid?”

I’m such a bastard. So we looked around, and nearly all the tanks they have are out of code, but I did find one that was only 2 years old. Fine by me. Snagged it.

I’ve read that the old tanks can be recertified, and that such a process gets the tank a special sticker, and that the re-cert is only good for 5 years. I didn’t notice any re-cert sticker, not that I know what one would look like.

I did notice that the new tank was stamped WC 47.6, which means the whole thing filled up will hold 47.6 pounds of water ( @ 8.33lb/gal, thus it’s a 5.71 gal tank ), so it can safely hold 20lb of propane at the 80% full “safety margin” level. 80% of 5.71 gallons is 4.57 gallons, and propane weighs 4.24 lb/gal, which yields 4.57 X 4.24 = 19.37lb, which is close enough. Much more than the 17lb the refill guy puts in, and FAR MORE than the pitiful 15lb the Blue Rhino people fill the tanks with.

Oddly ... conspiracy theory time ... Wal-mart’s $17.76 price for 15 pounds is hardly a penny a pound different from the $20 the car wash guys charge for their 17lb charge they sell you as “20lb”.

Got home, hung the tank up on the scale thingy inside the grill, and it shows the tank is less than 3/4 full.

Frankly, it’s not a matter of saving a quarter or so trying to get the best price. It’s my resistance against unnecessary downsizing; the damn tanks were built to hold 20lb of propane, and that’s WITH the 20% expansion safety margin, and WITH the silly little OPD float valve gizmo they now stick inside. A full tank lets me grill for 1/3 longer. That’s at least an extra weekend or two before I have to schlepp around trying to find a better dealer.

More info on BBQ propane tanks here. I gather the way to get your money’s worth is to have the refill attendant fill the tank until the OPD valve clicks, because it is set to government standards and trips when the tank is 80% full. And you get almost the full 20 pounds. Good enough.

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Fill it up until the valve shuts. That’s what’s it’s there for.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/17/2015 at 03:19 PM   
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calendar   Monday - July 13, 2015

oh plumber

I think I will add several new words to my swearing lexicon. Words like “ball valve”, “plumber”, “sweat fitting” “diverter cartridge”, and the like.

The plumber is here and is doing what he has to do. And I’m doing what I have to do, which is to spend money at an alarming rate. Water pipes aren’t made out of copper. Oh no, they’re solid gold, I’m convinced.

Holy sheep deep, I swear this guy opens a pipe and money shoots out. Right into his pocket.

I’ll be lucky to get out of this little job for a thousand bucks. Mother effer.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/13/2015 at 04:51 PM   
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Monday Gak

The diverter valve on the shower decided to stop working this morning. Isn’t that special?

I did what I could, running out to the garage to turn off every valve I could find. And found out that this unit may not actually have a unit shut-off valve. Or if it does, it doesn’t work.

So after filling up all the jugs and bottles and watering cans I could find trying to drain the lines, and filling the tub to overflow with clammy cool water, and still not seeing any slowing down in the water flow, I gave in and called the office.

“Why, there’s nothing we can do. You need to call a plumber and when they get there call us and we can come turn off the building. But you’ll have to tell all the neighbors that the water is being turned off.”

Gee, great. Fine. Whatever. So I call the plumber, and thank heaven, they can send a guy over in a couple of hours. So things will be fixed. And perhaps even a functioning shut-off valve installed.  I don’t care what it costs.

image

And here I was going to write of our big weekend adventure, crawling around up in the roof truss rafters, putting the clothes dryer exhaust pipe back together. Because - welcome to condo life, where you are responsible to all your neighbors! - every 3 years we have to produce a certificate saying that the dryer vent has been professionally cleaned. Not that I couldn’t do it myself with a blower and the auger whip drain cleaner for my power drill. Right. Anyway, the last time one of those guys was here, before we bought the place, he was so heavy handed that they popped the corner elbow on the exhaust vent. Which is built inside the stud wall of course. So we’ve actually had the dryer venting into the attic for the past 2 1/2 years, instead of out the vent pipe. Which isn’t really a problem, because it’s an electric dryer (no CO vapors from gas heat) and the low height truss roof attic has several passive vents to the outside. So no moisture builds up either. But my wife is tiny, and willing, and pretty good with tools and stuff, so she was able to worm her way in there and tie everything together with half a mile of fresh duct tape.  The vent cleaner guy should be here in half an hour. Let’s see what happens.

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I was going to write a fun missive about the Taming Of The Kittehs, but it turned out to be a Fail. Which is what I knew it would, but I can’t say that out loud, and she just adores the little family of semi-feral cats living outside here under the bushes. Mom cat Scowler, and her kits Fred and Ginger. I know. They’ve been given names. We’re sunk.

She’s been trying to tame Scowler for a year now. No luck. None. She comes close, but then runs. The two kits are spooky and spookier. But she’s persistent, and with the help of many cans of tuna fish and sardines, managed to get them to actually come inside into the kitchen, while she stood there and talked to them. And that was nice. The kittens appear to be weaned at this point, so perhaps now was the time. She snuck outside, came around the kitchen from the outside, and quietly closed the sliding door, gently capturing the two youngsters. And panic ensued. And stayed ensued for several hours. Eventually I went in and opened the door, and they were gone in a heartbeat. Sorry honey. I know you love them. But you can’t tame a half grown wild animal. Catch one as a baby, and maybe you’ll get lucky. Not these. I do hope she forwards me some of the pictures we took during the fracas, because it was pretty funny. Flying kittehs literally climbing the walls behind the refrigerator.

I managed to get the black one in a box for a few minutes, and he was so tharn* that I could pet him. Aww, soft kitteh. Ginger is more like her mother, and just went psycho. Later there were tears, but she’s accepted the truth. But she still wants to care for them and protect them, living out under the pricker bushes in our big bad jungle. I say no. That’s just going to get them to breed, and soon we’ll have even more of them.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/13/2015 at 12:41 PM   
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